Last week I had a major craving for Indian food. Living in a small town, my restaurant options are limited and sadly do not include any Indian restaurants nearby. Since I was not in the mood to drive an hour just to satisfy a food craving, I decided to get into the kitchen and whip up my own take on a favorite, tikka masala. Before I made may way to the kitchen, I decided I should look up a recipe to see what was needed. I had the general spices needed for it, but found I was missing some of the other ingredients. Since I was not even motivated enough to drive 10 minutes to the grocery store, I abandoned the recipes and decided to wing it.
Since I have made tikka masala quite a few times in the past, I had a general idea of what went in it and knew I could make it edible, if not fully authentic. So I browned some chicken, grabbed a can of tomato sauce from the pantry, my spices, and some milk and went to work. I was lucky enough to find some naan bread in my freezer and had plenty of rice on hand to sop up my sauce and about 20 minutes later I had a meal.
So why am I sharing a story about NOT using a recipe on on a website that loves it some recipes? Because I want you to know that while I love recipes and use them a pretty good chunk of the time that I cook, we do not need to be slaves to every specific ingredient all the time (except in baking, please stick to the recipe in baking!) I share my recipes with you in the hopes that you will try them once or twice on your own and maybe the third time add a little something you like or omit something because you don’t have it and don’t want to make a trip for it. Cooking at home saves you money only if you use what you have and don’t constantly buy items you will only use once and let rot or spoil.
Following a recipe to the T is a great way to get in the kitchen and build confidence but what I would love is for you to not only follow a great recipe, but to wander into the kitchen and add some of this and some of that and create your own food works of art. I want people to love to cook, to love to share food and if doing that means they sub in diced tomatoes for crushed tomatoes in my Simply Tasty Pasta Sauce then so be it. By the way, it is pretty good with diced tomatoes:)
So, how did my tikka experiment end up tasting? Amazing! Now I encourage you to get in the kitchen and have a food adventure of your own and share it with some of your favorite people and pets. And if it goes wrong, share it with your garbage can and try again.